Looking After Your Container Plants
You’ve spent time and money selecting and planting up your containers so it makes sense to provide proper care for those container plants. The following tips will encourage and maintain maximum flowering throughout the summer.
First, make sure that your container has at least one drainage hole and put some crocks in the base to cover the hole(s). Fill loosely with good quality potting compost. Water the plants well before planting and give thought to the height and spread of each plant when deciding whereabouts in the container to put them.
Some container plants look best when grown on their own, for example marguerites and patio roses, whereas others look better in a mixed planting. The top 5 container plants are geranium, petunia, impatiens, fuchsia and lobelia but in reality there is a huge selection of suitable plants. Browse our website via the following link and take your pick:
Evergreens such as box and bay work well in containers and provide year round interest. Just make sure that the chosen container is frost-proof and be ready to cover the plant with fleece or move it under cover on those cold, frosty days.
Include slow-release fertiliser when planting up containers or regularly apply a liquid fertiliser. Tomato food is great for encouraging strong flowering. Remember that the more you have to water the more fertiliser is washed through in drainage so you may have to feed more. If the foliage begins to pale this is a sign that you need to increase your feeding regime.
Container plants require liberal watering, the aim being to keep the soil moist but not water-logged. In spells of hot weather this can mean watering twice a day.
Deadhead your container plants as the flowers fade. This will encourage the plants to continue flowering for longer. Once a plant has finished flowering carefully remove it from the container, taking care not to disturb other plants. Then either fill the gap with fresh compost or, better still, replace with a later maturing plant.
Most container plants like a sunny, sheltered spot in the garden. One of the big benefits of containers is of course that you can move them around and they can be very useful for filling gaps left by garden plants that have finished flowering.